Buying health insurance online? Here are some key factors to consider

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February 17, 2021 1:47 PM

Most people wait for a financial emergency to strike and then opt for a policy, but that is not the right approach. Experts suggest one should buy a health insurance cover for self and family members even before they start saving.

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After the pandemic, it has been suggested by most industry experts and financial planners that buying a health cover for self and family members is crucial, even before one starts to save.

However, after the outbreak of Coronavirus, even though there has been a significant rise in the purchase of health insurance policies — both regular health insurance plans as well as exclusive covers for COVID-19 — there are certain things one needs to consider while buying an insurance policy.

For instance, if the policyholder has dependents, he/she should not buy a health plan just for oneself but for all the members of the family. With that, the policyholder will also be able to enjoy tax benefits on the premium paid.

Experts suggest most people wait for a financial emergency to strike and then opt for a policy, but that is not the right approach. Most experts suggest one should buy a health insurance cover for self and family members even before they start saving.

Without a health insurance policy, it could be hard for individuals to meet medical expenses during hospitalisation and could also mean dipping into his/her investments. The tax saving part is the added benefit that comes with health insurance.

If you are new to this area, health insurance plans can be bought from various places such as from an insurance agent, from online insurance aggregators or by directly visiting the insurer’s website. Among these options buying insurance online have increased, but one should be careful while buying a policy online. Policyholders should go through policy terms, benefits and exclusions before zeroing down a policy.

Going through the policy terms, its benefits, and exclusions before making a final decision, is extremely important while buying a health insurance plan online. Checking the inclusions and exclusions of a health insurance plan is necessary so that you are not surprised later. Also, policyholders buying a policy online will need to generate a policy document that will work as proof for tax purposes, while paying the premium online.

If you are buying health plans online, similar to buying a health plan offline, you will have to disclose all pertinent information about your health to the insurance company. Additionally, if you have any pre-existing ailments at the time of filling the online form, you also need to disclose it to the insurer. Some insurers also ask policyholders to undergo medical tests before issuing the policy.

Also, note that there can be a delay in claims settlement if the information provided at the time of buying the policy and at the time of hospitalisation differs.

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